By John Turney
First-team on the left, Second-team on the right:
Finding a tackle opposite Jonathan Ogden was not easy, they have had solid players, but no one that really stood out and several that disappointed. We looked at several things and came up with the order in the chart, but will be looking deeper to see if there may be a hidden season or two by someone. For Ogden, we went with 2002 when he allowed only two sacks and was not flagged for a single penalty all season.
Jamal Lewis was chalk at one spot. Ray Rice had to get the other season. The backups presented some tough
those who we listed seemed like the next-best to Lewis and Rice. choices but
Todd Heap had a few seasons that qualified, we went with 2005 over 2006 when he was voted the NFL's top TE by NFL Alumni. In 2005 he had more yards and touchdowns. His 2002 was also a great year with good numbers but his blocking always set him apart.
Backing him up is Shannon Sharpe from the 2000 Championship team. McClain was a fullback who could carry the ball, and Leach is one of the modern, guard-in-the-backfield types, though he could catch well.
Michael Jackson and Derrick Alexander were holdovers from the Cleveland Browns and still have the best statistical seasons by any Ravens receivers. Floyd Turner had better numbers and he gets the nod over Stokely.
Flacco's Super Bowl-winning season over a couple of slightly better statistical seasons. Vinny put up big numbers in 1996 and deserves recognition for it. with
Kickers and punters are prioritized by honors then net punting and FG accuracy. All four are strong for the Ravens and could be juggled a bit. Sam Koch's 2014 stands as his best with a 43.3 net average and a 26-4 inside-the-20 to touchback ratio, though in 2015 he made the Pro Bowl however 2014 was a slightly better year.
The defense was fun to choose, with three Defensive Player of the Year winners and other strong seasons by one of the best defenses, year-in, and year-out since they became a team in 1996
We went with honors and stats for the CB positions in general. Rod Woodson is qualified for two spots—safety and corner. As a corner in 1998 he picked off six passes and took two to the house. The rest of CBs here are very solid, but not superstars. We were tempted to put
as a nickel here, but we though the two listed made more plays so Deion gets honorable mention as a nickel as does Corey Ivy for 2008 when he had 52 tackles and 2.5 sacks. Ivy was excellent as the "Cat" blitz, amassing 9.5 sacks from 2005-08 with Ravens and Rams. Deion Sanders's lone season
Okay, for purists, they will see Ed Reed listed as a strong safety. Well, he was listed there by
in 2004. Will Demps was listed as the free safety from 2002-05. Ravens
However, we are fully aware that in
the safeties really were pretty much interchangeable and both safeties will play strong and free depending on the formation and situation and defensive call. But in his early years, Ed Reed did often play close to the line of scrimmage and made lots of plays there. In his first four seasons when he did line up more to the TE side (2002-2005) he had 17.5 run stuffs. In the seven Raven seasons when he lined up more to the open side (2006-2012) he had 7.5 run stuffs. Ravens defensive scheme
Regardless he was the NFL Defensive Player of the Year as had one of the best-ever seasons by any safety in any season, ever.
In 1999-2000, sometimes against base personnel (21) the Ravens would use a Buddy Ryan-type 46 front, but would play cover-3 deep and have
the tight end man-to-man. They would also blitz Peter Boulware from the "Otis Wilson" spot and two defenders would then have to cover the short zones, all five of them. OLBer Jamie Sharper player
We don't know what they called it, but in verbiage, I am familiar with, it would be Bear Cover-3 latch. The "latch" means a
takes the TE on all routes, everyone else in LBer . But it would not be as complex as what Marvin Lewis was doing. According to PFJ's Coach T.J. Troup they could get away with this because the two defenders assigned to the underneath zones could run and tackle. Their names? Rod Woodson and Ray Lewis. zone
Lewis had two DPOY
to choose from and it was a tough call, but we went with 1999 rather than 2000 or 2003. He had 16.5 tackles for loss, picked off three passes a career-high in tackles. His runner-up season is 2003 with his six picks. seasons
Had we chosen a 3-4 ILBer it would have been Mosely and we'd find two Second-team inside 'backers. Daryl Smith is an honorable mention for his 2013 season when he had three picks, five sacks and 123 tackles. He'd be the Second-team MLBer had he gone with a 4-3 scheme.
/half defensive half linebacker . Thomas was part linebacker, part end, sometimes even lining up outside. Boulware was a linebacker versus base offenses, and when they went sub (3-wide or 4-wide) he was the left defensive end. Bart Scott would play inside, then outside, in 2006 he had 9.5 sacks. Had to leave him off the First-team for that year, but Suggs and Thomas had the best years, though we could put Scott as an ILB because he did play there in the 3-4. Jarrett Johnson would be honorable mention as would Jamie Sharper's fabulous 2001 season. end
There is some beef in the Ravens defensive line choices. Only Michael McCrary is a speedster-type. Why do we at
insist that AP All-Pro teams not "The" All-Pro team? In addition to THIS: here is an anecdotal example. In 1998 only Sporting News recognized McCrary as First-team All-Pro with it's player vote. Why is that important? McCrary not only had the then single-season record of 14.5 sacks he had 12 run stuffs, for 26.5 plays behind the line of scrimmage. Pro Football Journal
The AP All-Pro DEs were Reggie White (also DPOY) and Michael Strahan. White had 16 sacks and 3 stuffs for 19 sacks+stuffs. Strahan had 15 sacks and 8 stuffs for 23. The Second-team All-Pros were Smith and Michael Sinclair, whose totals were 10+4=14 and 16.5+3.5 = 20, respectively. It was a year where three of the four were the top
and possibly the run stuffs were not looked at as part of the equation or just ignored. sackers
Burnett is a personal favorite. He'd line up as
end in base and in nickel, he'd reduce to a 3-technique (and also play 3-technique in the 46). In 2000 he had 10.5 sacks, 6 stuffs, 5 fumbles recovered, 3 forced fumbles and a an on the NFL's best defense. Trevor Pryce and Redding were both Rob Burnett-types, ends on run downs, tackles in nickel, with Pryce pick 13.0 sacks in 2006. getting
Haloti Ngata was consistent and had a few
that fit 2010 he was the best in the business. He was listed as a 3-4 end but he's a defensive interior guy. Sam Adams is the other choice. The three quickest defensive tackles off the ball we've seen are 1. Sam Adams, 2. Alan Page, 3. Aaron Donald. Goose and Gregg back the tackles and are seasons -technique shade . In 2003 Gregg had 80 types stuffs and 3 sacks. Siragusa may be only defensive lineman who has a season chosen where he didn't have a sack. We went with a tackles 6.5 but could have just as easily gone with 1999 when he had 3.5 sacks. Super Bowl-winning season
had tons of sacks and two starts in 2014 and McPhee had a Dumervil , too, often as an inside rusher. Paul Kruger gets an honorable mention. good year
Agree, disagree? Did we make a mistake? Let us know.